Archive for the ‘Carrots’ Category

Carrot and Black Bean Posole


340 gram package dried posole [4 cups], soaked overnight

1 large russet potato, cut into a bite-sized dice

3 carrots, sliced

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed 

1 poblano pepper, skin removed and subsequently diced

8 dried guajillo peppers

4 roma tomatoes

2 large yellow onion [One is for the sauce, one is to be chopped for the stew.]

6 cloves garlic [2 cloves for the sauce, 4 minced for the stew.]

1 box vegetable stock

1 jalapeno, diced

2 dried bay leaves

1 T dried oregano


Place poblano pepper under the broiler to blister and blacken the skin. Place pepper into a plastic bag and seal. When cooled, the skin peels off easily. Cut the tops from the dried guajillo peppers and remove the seeds. Toast the guajillos in a skillet until slightly browned. Place in a bowl with a few cups of hot water to rehydrate. Reserve this liquid for the sauce.

Cut an onion in half and place in a skillet cut sides down along with the roma tomatoes and blacken. [This char adds great flavor in the final sauce.] Add the blackened onion and tomatoes along with the rehydrated guajillos and 2 cloves of garlic to a blender. Add a bit of the guajillo soaking liquid to blend. Blend the mixture until homogenous. Add the remaining guajillo soaking liquid. Blitz a few times and set aside.

Drizzle a bit of oil into a soup pot and sauté the chopped onion and jalapeno until the onions have softened. Add minced garlic, oregano, black beans, poblano pepper and posole. After a couple minutes toss in the bay leaves and guajillo pepper sauce. Cook at a low simmer for an hour and a half. [If the soup needs more liquid add in vegetable broth. The consistency is really up to you and your tastes. H prefers soups on the heartier side with less broth so I made this posole more stew-like.]

Add the potatoes and carrots and continue cooking at a low simmer for another 90 minutes or until the posole is tender. Adjust the volume and consistency of the soup/stew with broth and taste to season with salt and pepper.

Garnish with whatever wonderfully fresh ingredients you can imagine. Shredded cabbage, radishes, freshly-squeezed lime juice, creamy avocado, tomatillo salsa, pepitas and cilantro are only a few ideas. It’s entirely up to your tastes.

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Silken Joy



Dilled Carrot and Potato Soup with Pistachio Cream

If you want a more savory soup replace the carrot juice with vegetable stock.


1 large Russet potato, large dice  [The one I used yielded 4 cups.]

6 carrots, cut into similar sized pieces as the potato [Also about 4 cups worth.]

1 onion, sliced

1/2 cup celery, sliced

4 cloves garlic, minced

6 sprigs of fresh thyme, tied together with kitchen twine for easy removal later

2 dried bay leaves

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup white wine [I used a Sauvignon Blanc.]

2 cups carrot juice

vegetable stock  [The amount will vary according to the thickness of soup you desire.]

1 T dill seeds

salt and pepper to taste


Heat olive oil in a soup pot and add onions and celery.  Cook till the onions have softened and add in the potatoes and carrots.  Let these cook till the vegetables have browned edges. [Browned bits are where the flavor is at.] Add in the garlic, dill and thyme and mix well.  Deglaze the bottom of the pot with the wine and allow a few minutes for the alcohol to evaporate off.  Add in the carrot juice and one cup of vegetable stock.   Cover and cook for half an hour or so, until the vegetables are fork tender. 

Remove the bay leaves and thyme stems.  Transfer the soup to a blender and blitz till smooth.  [Remember that hot liquids will expand when blended so do not fill the blender more than half-way and cover the top with a kitchen towel while holding down the lid.]  Adjust the consistency with vegetable stock and taste to see if salt and pepper are needed.

Spoon some of the sweet pistachio cream and tart creamy dill sauce over the soup and garnish with chopped pistachios for a nice crunchy contrast to the silky soup.

Dilled Tofu Sauce

You can adjust the tartness of this sauce by adding either more of less vinegar.  The vinegar I used has a very distinct flavor though as a common substitute I would likely choose an apple cider vinegar.


1/2 package firm silken tofu

1 cup fresh dill

2 T fresh lemon juice

2 tsp pear vinegar 

1 tsp dill seeds

salt and pepper to taste


Simply blend all ingredients in a food processor. 

Creamed Pistachio Sauce


1/4 cup pistachios

1/4 cup So Delicious Original Coconut Creamer


Toss into a processor and blend.

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This was a quick, easy and delicious lunch.  I schmeared it onto some dark pumpernickel and stacked on some carrot slices with dandelion greens and watercress.  Marvelous!


Soft Lemony Cashew and Tofu Cheese


1/4 cup raw cashews

1/4 cup firm silken tofu

2 T fresh lemon juice

few sprigs fresh thyme, destemmed

1 tsp lemon zest

few dashes umeboshi vinegar [could substitute with cider vinegar]

salt and pepper to taste


Simply blend together in a food processor until a smooth consistency is achieved.

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Despite the fact that the British Air Ministry deceived more than the Germans during WWII, thus searing the myth that carrots were good for your eyesight onto the collective retina, carrots are good for you.  They’re packed full of fiber, phytonutrients and anti-oxidants [lutein, lycopene, alpha, beta and gamma carotenes, zeaxanthin and xanthophyll], vitamins [pro-vitamin A, vitamins C, D, E, K, B1 and B6] and minerals [biotin, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, organic sodium and other trace minerals].  That’s just the stuff we know about.  The carrot, as a whole, is a great food and that is why this month we shall include many recipes that focus on this incredibly versatile and ubiquitous vegetable.

If you can find carrots with the tops attached, buy them!  I remember as a teenager I worked at a local market and the checkout clerks would offer to remove the carrot tops for their customers.  Then, I thought it was a great service, now…you’d have to pry them out of my cold dead hands.  Carrot tops are marvelous to cook with.  They have the brightness of parsley and a slightly carrot  flavored taste to them.   Which leads me to the first carrot recipe this month…

Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top and Pepita Pesto


1 bunch carrots with tops

 ¼ cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

 ¼ cup pepitas, pan toasted

 1 tsp lemon zest

 1 T walnut oil

 1 clove garlic


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut carrots into bite-sized pieces and spray lightly with olive oil.  Toss to coat well and place in the oven for 30 minutes or until the carrots are fork tender. 

Wash and dry the carrot tops.  Give them a rough chop and place ½ cup into a food processor.  Add the parsley, lemon zest, 2 T pepitas, walnut oil and the garlic clove.   [Do not process it so much that you get a homogenous paste.  You want some rustic texture.]   Transfer the pesto to a bowl and add in the remaining pepitas.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Simply spoon the pesto over the roasted carrots and serve.  

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